Media Publishing Dashboard Ideas

I've worked with quite a few media publishers over the years and have enjoyed this business model. Produce tons of content to build an audience around a topic or industry and then develop strategic partnerships to monetize the traffic. The days of just placing a few banner ads on your website to monetize is few and far between. The internet has come a far way in the innovation of generating revenues on large quantities of traffic.

Having worked with companies who have big editorial teams writing a few pieces a week that is driving social and organic search traffic I developed a few ways with analytics to help these teams gain deeper insights into their audiences to help them write better content that is more engaging for their specific audience.

Key Performance Indicators for Content Engagement

Most editorial teams have a general set of data points they look at which I've listed below, but I want to also highlight some more innovative ones I've helped bring to editorial teams as well.

General Data Points that Have Become Standardized

  • Metrics
    • Pageviews
    • Bounce and Exit Rates
    • Session Duration and Time on Page
    • Share Counts
  •  Dimensions for Slicing
    • Referral Sources
    • Channel Groupings
    • Time of Day and Day of Week
    • Location

New Custom Data Points Implementations

  • Metrics
    • Active Time on Page
    • Scroll Depth
    • Time on Page Section
  •  Dimensions for Slicing
    • Content Metadata 
      • Author Name, Article Date, Content Type, Category, etc.
    • Word Count

With these more custom events and properties, you can do some powerful analysis. Think about these three things - Word Count, Active Time on Page and Scroll Depth. Using those three events and properties we can know if they got through the entire page, how long they were on it and by doing some math we can take the average human reading speed of 275 words per minute and calculate if they were active on the page long enough to read through the entire article. From here we can aggregate by the author, category, topic, etc. how effective the editorial team is at getting a reader to consume their content. 

Here is an example dashboard where the editorial team is able to filter by all these properties and see their effectiveness is at readers consuming the content. In this case, this author has a median reading ratio of 13% which is much lower than his counterparts on the editorial team. So this person knows to now start testing out other topics and changing up their writing style to try and get closer to the baseline of the team which is around 40% overall. Another thing to highlight on this dashboard is the discrepancy between pageviews and the median reading ratio. Most editorial teams look solely at the pageviews as their measurement of success vs. something like reading ratio which was it actually relevant. Pageviews alone is a vannity metric.

Media Publisher Dashboard